Did you know that when you visit a website Windows maintains a cache (temporary holding area) of the DNS information about the site? I know you are probably wondering what is all this talk about DNS and who cares.
I recently was required to change internet service providers. I went from DSL to Cable. I immediately noticed, on a frequent basis, that there was lag time in page loads and that many web sites would time out and not load at all. As a result, I started getting an error in my browser where the server could not be found. First instinct was that my cable provider was the problem; however, after some thought; and research to confirm my thoughts, I discovered that my DNS Cache on my PC needed flushed out. Once I flushed the DNS Cache, the lag time disappeared on the page loads and the sites ceased timing out.
What is the DNS? DNS is the computer term for Domain Name System (or Service or Server)… The DNS translates domain names (such as wordpress.com or microsoft.com) into IP addresses (or numerical identifiers) that network equipment on the internet can read (or translate). In essence the DNS is like a phonebook.
If you experience the same problems I indicated, try flushing out the Windows DNS Cache. It is easy and safe to do. You can do this by:
- Clicking on “Start”, then “Run”
- Type cmd
- At the command prompt, at the blinking cursor, type ipconfig /flushdns and hit “Enter”
- You will see the message, “Successfully flushed the DNS Resolver Cache”
- You are finished! Your Window DNS cache has just been flush. You can close the window.